Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Eighth Orchid of the Season and Others

We traveled recently to eastern Washington and made several stops for orchids and hiking both on the way and on the way home.  We visited several sites on the east slopes of the Cascades and another site in north-central Washington.  We had our first look of the season at the Eastern Fairy Slipper, Calypso bulbosa var. americana and found both forms, the white-lipped and the pink-lipped (fma. rosea) forms.  We also found for the first time a plant with two flowers, fma. biflora.

Calypso bulbosa var. americana

 Calypso bulbosa var. americana fma. biflora

Calypso bulbosa var. americana fma. rosea

On the way east we stopped at a site where the other variety, the Western fairy Slipper, Calypso bulbosa var. occidentalis was still blooming, though we found only a few plants.  It is nice to see both varieties at the same time and see once again the differences that separate these varieties, In this case, a white beard and a spotted lip.  We were a little disappointed, however, that there were so few still blooming, but that's due to a very early season and a very warm spring.

Calypso bulbosa var. occidentalis

We visited several other sites looking for the first Lady's Slippers of the season, but they were not blooming yet.  We did find a lot of Western Spotted Coralroots at one site, Corallorhiza maculata var. occidentalis, and found both the brown-stemmed and red-stemmed forms, fma. intermedia and fma. punicea.  We took some pictures, but this is a species we see so often and in so many places that oftentimes we do not even bother to photograph it.

Corallorhiza macular var. occidentalis

 Corallorhiza maculata var. occidentalis fma. punicea

 Corallorhiza maculata var. occidentalis fma. intermedia